Why Australia Is Great For First Time Backpackers

Three and half year ago I set off on my first backpacking adventure travelling around Australia. These days I’d like to think my horizon’s have broadened as far as challenging myself and experiencing new cultures, however, if you have never been backpacking before, Australia is definitely a great place to make that transition and first step, as well as just being a lot of fun!


The combination of beach, desert, jungle, mountain, city, and rural landscapes in down under, is definitely a great way for a first time traveller to try out various activities, see a variety of sights, and choose from a variety of jobs should they want to top up their travel funds. With all this variety in one country it really allows you to find out what aspects of travel you really like within the comfort of a developed, bureaucratically stable country. For me, I found it a great place to learn the basics of travel, and a chance to make and learn from any mistakes I made along the way without too many repercussions.

Probably one of the key factors in Australia being a great backpacking destination is the fact that its economy is booming right now. Currently, it is the only developed country in the world not to have been hit by the credit crunch or global recession. Its booming mining industry in the North West has meant a lot of Australians have been flying in and out of the area to make big money, therefore leaving a lot of jobs which would normally be filled by locals in cities like Perth, available to backpackers on a Working Holiday Visa. On top of that the country is also short of workers in a lot of particular occupations and trades such as hairdressers, joiners, IT specialists, and dentists. So if you work in any of these careers you will find it very easy to find work in most cities you travel through, and will often get paid more than you would back home in places like the UK or Ireland. Even if you don’t have an occupation which is on the list, or are just looking to work in places like, pubs, restaurants, or call centres, these places often pay more than places like the UK, Canada, or The States. I worked in a few bars amongst other things while I was there, and got paid on average 18 Australian dollars an hour plus tips.

One of the main contributing factor’s of Australia being a great destination is definitely the sunshine. I think the fact that I come from Scotland probably makes this more of a contributing factor than say someone from the south of Spain. In most parts of the country, be it Sydney or Cairns, you can wake up to sunny skies almost every day of the year. The city of Perth is actually the sunniest city in the world. I really enjoyed my stay in this incredible place. I managed to find a cheap hotel in Perth on Expedia to relax for few days. I must admit, as much as I love hostels it was nice to have a few nights in a private hotel room for a change. Regardless, the sunshince really does make a difference to your day and is also great during summer as most of Australia’s towns and cities are on the coast and means you can make a trip to the beach at the drop of a hat. The sunny climate is also reflected in the laid back “no worries” attitude of the locals. I found most people I came across in Oz to be extremely laid back and it definitely rubs off on you. With most first time backpackers, you are either trying to escape the stresses of the 9 to 5, or looking for a well deserved break from Uni. This definitely helps when you’re trying to relax and have fun.

Australia is definitely an easy country to adapt to if you are coming from either Europe or North America, especially so if you are from an English speaking country or can speak the language well. Like I already mentioned above, I think people should really push themselves to visit countries where they don’t speak your language, or have different customs, traditions, or ways of life, but for a first time traveller it really helps that they speak a universally recognised language. Also, even if you don’t speak much English people are normally willing to help where they can. I made friends with 2 German brothers while in Western Australia, both of whom could speak very little English when they entered the country (with one actually having his baggage lost by customs on arrival) and by the time they left both could speak great conversational English (and got their luggage back!) 🙂

There are so many reasons why Australia is a great backpacking location, especially for first time travellers that I couldn’t possibly write them all. My advice would be to visit this great country and really experience what I mean first hand. If it gives you the travel bug as hard as it gave me, then it will inspire you to see more of the world, which is only a good thing in my mind.

8 Responses to “Why Australia Is Great For First Time Backpackers”

  1. I know I’m biased as I grew up in Australia but I still think its a great place to see. Just be sure to get out of the major cities and have a good look around. The little country towns are where you find the real characters 🙂

  2. jane says:

    Yeah, I spent a couple months in the outback and found some really interesting characters. 🙂

  3. Barry says:

    Hi Jane,

    We haven’t had the fortune to go to Australia – and, to be really honest, it was never top of our list – but your photography has just shifted our opinion a bit.

    So go on – persuade us to leave Turkey and go to Oz (but for just for a week)

    And good luck with your site – it’s looking great!

  4. jane says:

    Hi Barry

    I must admit, there are more challenging and culturaly rewarding places to go in the world than Australia. For a relaxing holiday though I think it’s great. My advice would be to go to Western Australia if you get the chance. The scenery there is just incredible and it’s very easy to find a secluded beach. Also cheaper international flights than to Sydney or Melbourne! 😀

    I am also thinking about going to Turkey in the summer or round september if I can’t make it then. Is there anywhere you would recommend? 🙂

  5. ayngelina says:

    New Zealand is also great for first time backpackers, the country has an amazing budget tourism system and it’s so easy to get around the country. Although like Australia, it isn’t the cheapest.

    • jane says:

      hi ayngelina
      yea i’ve heard great things about new zealand. never got the chance to make a trip over when I was in oz, but look forward to going there sometime next year.

  6. Jake says:

    As a first time backpacker, I must say I’ve had a blast doing it the Australian way. I’ve learned so many things about myself, and I know I could never be the person I am now had I not come here!

    Here’s some things I learned about life in Oz:

    Now I’m thirsty for more difficult countries, but I’m all out of money 🙁


  1. […] Australia is the most popular backpacker destination in the world, and it is not hard to see why! When you have beautiful beaches, urban nightlife, coral reefs, lush jungle, mountainside, and outback desert to discover all within one entire country, Australia really does have it all. With such vast variety of landscape, there also comes a huge variety of wildlife too see and experience from the native Kangaroo, the fierce crocodile, cuddly Koala, to the array of insects and spiders, most of whom are native only to Australia. More endearing though is laid back Ozzie lifestyle. After a few beers and a barbie you’ll be loving you sunny escape to the Northern Hemispheres winter here. […]

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